Redang

Everything in monochrome. Black sea, sand white in the moonlight, black trees. Ribbons of grey cloud. The black upward arc of an old boat beached long ago.

Flying foxes – huge bats – passing over the face of the moon. Their nightly commute for sweet fruit dangling from trees untouched by human hands.

The dinosaurian scrape, scrape of a turtle dragging herself up the beach. The length of a medium dog, but she weighs as much as a big man. So much weight. You and your partner glance at each other. No rush. She will take her time.

Far down the beach, a ruby star bobs. Another pair of volunteers are bustling around their turtle with a clipboard: when did she start to dig, when to lay, how many eggs, when did she close up. Buried treasures.

The ransom, the debt. Chagar Hutang, Redang.

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